Migrating from Moodle to Canvas

When migrating content from Moodle to Canvas, you can choose all or specific content. Follow the steps below for detailed instructions.

Not sure how your Moodle content will transition to Canvas? See our Canvas Conversion Chart!

After you have a new course shell in Canvas, follow the instructions below to import your course content from Moodle.

In Moodle

  • Navigate to the course you want to move
  • Select "Backup" from the "Administration" menu
  • Follow the steps to create the back file
  • You'll end up on a page that has "User private backup area" at the bottom
  • Click on "Download" to save the file to your local computer

In Canvas

  • Navigate to your course
  • Select "Settings"
  • Click on"Import Content into This Course" from the buttons on the right
  • Select "Moodle..." for the "Content Type"
  • Next to "Source", click the "Choose File" button and browse the Moodle backup file
  • Click "All Content"
  • Click "Import"

Detailed Steps to Backup Your Moodle Course:

These are the steps to backup a course in Moodle.  If you experience any trouble, please do not hesitate to contact Moodle Support at edtech@pugetsound.edu.

  1. Navigate to your course in Moodle
  2. Click Backup from the Administration block
  3. Click next to handpick course items you want to transfer or, Jump to final step to perform a standard backup of content only
  4. If you chose "next," uncheck any items you don't want to transfer and perform the import

  5. Backup can take several minutes to process. Click Continue if backup was successful.
  6. From the Restore course page, click Download to move a copy of the course to your local downloads folder
  • Note: the file name, you will need to find this file when you perform the import into Canvas, it should look similar to this: backup-moodle2-course-3137-jmc_309_(2164)-20160719-0857-nu.mbz
  • Note that the course short name from Moodle is embedded within the filename

Detailed Steps to Import Moodle Content into Your Canvas Course:

Canvas Instructor Guide:  How do I import content from Moodle to Canvas? 

  1. Navigate to your course. In Course Navigation, click the Settings link
  2. Click the Import Course Content link.
  3. In the Content Type drop-down menu, select the Moodle 1.9/2.x .zip file option.
  4. Click the Choose File button.
  5. Find and click the Moodle .zip or .mbz file you want to import [1]. Click the Open button [2].
  6. In the Default Question bank drop-down menu, select the Question bank you want to use for your question bank from Moodle.  

    If you do not have a question bank you want to use, you can create a new question bank. In the drop-down menu, select the Create new question bank option.
  7. To import all content from the course, select the All Content radio button [1].
    If you want to select specific content, click the Select specific content radio button [2].
    Note: If you select the specific content option, you are required to select the content you want to import after you review the remaining page options. After you start importing the content, the import selection cannot be canceled. 
  8. If you want to adjust the due dates associated with the course events and assignments, click the Adjust events and due dates checkbox.
  9. Click the Import button.
  10. The Current Jobs section displays the status of your import. Running reports display a menu bar with the time remaining to complete the import [1].

    If you chose to select specific content in your course, the current job will show as Waiting for Select [2], which means you must select the content you want to import.


    The import may also display other status indicators as part of the import process. Learn more about course import statuses.

    View the content from any completed imports by accessing any link in Course Navigation.